Between Interval – The Edge Of A Fairytale (Spotted Peccary)

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Swedish ambient producer Stefan Strand first started experimenting with electronic sounds in his teens, initially inspired by video game soundtracks and the likes of Jarre and Pink Floyd, before going on to self-release his debut album as Between Interval ‘Radio Silence’ in 2003. Since then, he’s released two subsequent albums through California-based label Spotted Peccary, and this fourth album ‘The Edge Of A Fairytale’ represents his first new material since 2006’s ‘Autumn Continent.’ In this case, this latest collection takes its title from Strand’s overriding conceptual theme of life existing on the edge of a fairytale – between the known and unknown, something that’s reflected in mythologically fixated track titles like ‘Minotaur’s Lair’, ‘Atlantis Lost’s and ‘Eden In Shadows.’ Opening track ‘Delta Capricorni’ offers a pretty good indication as to to the sorts of deep ambient atmospheres to be found amongst the eleven tracks here, opening proceedings with sorts of vast synth pads, harmonic sweeps and deep, ominous bass drones you’d associate with Tangerine Dream or ‘Baraka’s Michael Stearns – indeed, it’s practically begging to be accompanied with some time-lapse video footage of desert clouds. ‘The Great Void’ sees some darker, more ominous tones edging into proceedings as whirring textures creep in alongside mournful, minor key washes of synths, but in many senses Strand never really allows the darkness to completely take over here, preferring instead to focus on a mood that’s more awed than really menacing – something that’s nicely reflected in the creeping bass synth pulse and cosmic-sounding synth washes of ‘Minotaur’s Lair.’ All things considered, ‘The Edge Of A Fairytale’ is beautifully produced stuff that while it perhaps doesn’t really offer any new, unexpected angles on the ambient genre certainly shows Strand successfully conjuring immersive atmospheres over its one hour running length. That said however, the adherence to the same sorts of elements means that there’s often little to distinguish individual tracks here, and a slight sense of repetition creeps in here at points.

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A dastardly man with too much music and too little time on his hands

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